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Are You Ready For The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon?

Submitted by on March 21, 2013 – 9:02 am4 Comments

The whispers that Jimmy Fallon will take over for Jay Leno at NBC’s Tonight Show are growing into a roar. The New York Times reported yesterday that NBC is building Fallon a new studio at Rockefeller Center with the understanding that he will begin hosting the legendary late night show within the next year and a half.

Current host Jay Leno is still first in the late night ratings, even among the most coveted demographic of viewers 18-29. But Jimmy Kimmel‘s rival program has performed strongly since moving to 11:35pm and competing directly with Tonight and David Letterman at the Late Show.

Elevating Fallon could help NBC grab younger viewers, while ensuring that the host does not go elsewhere.

Of course, Leno is reportedly extremely unhappy at being pushed out while he is still performing so well. He has directed pointed humor at NBC in his monologues recently, mocking their failing primetime line-up and calling the executives “snakes.”

When NBC infamously tried to replace Leno with Conan O’Brien in 2009, Leno was moved to the 10pm spot to ensure that he did not switch networks, but the awkward talk show never took off. When NBC tried to move Leno back to a half-hour at 11:30pm, O’Brien bolted, and the network suffered negative press for months.

In addition to the news of the switch itself, fans and media watchers are excited that Tonight will be moving back to New York. The show originally filmed in Manhattan, from its inception in 1954 until 1972, when Johnny Carson moved the production out to Hollywood.

I’d be thrilled to have another late night show in New York. The Daily Show and The Colbert Report are fantastic, but a variety show could highlight sketch, standup, and music even more. And Late Night will continue in the city with whomever replaces Fallon? (Maybe Louis C.K.? Or probably Howard Stern…)

What do you think of Fallon taking over the Tonight Show?


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